Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change

International Justice/ICTY: Jun ‘09

IWPR reporter wins plaudit while IWPR round table discusses transitional justice in the Balkans.
An IWPR-trained journalist in Belgrade won a prestigious press award at the beginning of June for his outstanding work with the Serbian daily Danas over the last 12 months.

Aleksandar Roknic was named the newspaper’s journalist of the year and presented with the Nikola Burzan award, named after a prominent Serbian journalist who died nine years ago.

Roknic, who was trained by IWPR in 2006 and has been reporting for IWPR’s international justice programme ever since, was singled out for his excellent reporting on justice-related issues. In addition to covering war crimes trials in The Hague and Belgrade, he has written in-depth analytical reports on issues related to transitional justice in the Balkans.

"What I've learned with IWPR has helped me very much in my everyday work. Unlike the other media in the region, IWPR insists on absolute authenticity of sources used in an article - be it a document or a person who has information on certain issues,” Roknic said shortly after receiving the reward.

He said that the training he received with IWPR helped him considerably in terms of structuring his articles and developing different angles.

Also in June, a small round-table event was held in The Hague to discuss Simon Jennings's recent special report: Calls for Bigger EU Role in Balkan Stability Efforts. IWPR invited embassy representatives from EU member states and from countries of former Yugoslavia, as well as people working in international justice and on transitional justice issues, to discuss the extent of the EU's responsibility to aid long-term stability in the region and support transitional justice initiatives.

Participants talked about the bloc's current approach to creating stability in the western Balkans, including the process of EU accession for states in the region. Also discussed were areas in which demands for transitional justice from the region were problematic or unrealistic in terms of the goal of creating long-term stability across the Western Balkans.

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